Towing Test: 2017 Dodge Ram 3500 Heavy-Duty

Towing Test: 2017 Dodge Ram 3500 Heavy-Duty Mar 8, 2017

Do you have a big and/or heavy boat to move? The Ram 3500 Laramie 4×4 may be your answer. The Dodge Ram pickup lineup features three basic configurations: 1500, 2500 and 3500 series. Each is customizable within the line to suit your needs with trim levels: ST, SLT, Laramie, Longhorn, and Limited.
Our test truck was equipped with a cast iron block and head Cummins 6.7 Liter Turbo Diesel engine. The engine features 408 cubic inches of displacement, an overhead valve design with 24 valves and solid lifters that combine to produce up to 385 horsepower at 2,800 rpm. The Ram 3500 continues once again in 2017 to offer the most capable one-ton pickup with 31,210 pounds of towing, 7,390 pounds of payload and 900 lb.-ft. of torque. In the heavy-duty pickup segment, that also equates to the most capability, highest towing ability, and most power available in any pickup on the market today.
The Cummins 6.7 Liter engine has Selective Catalytic Reduction to lower emissions, so you will need to be sure that you keep the DEF tank of urea topped up. Fortunately, this is now available at most service stations, but I’d suggest carrying your own extra supply on a long trip just in case. Diesel engines do not run well if there is water in the fuel. It is important to drain the water from the separator if the “water in fuel” indicator lights up and chimes five times. Diesel engines are high compression engines, and since water will not compress it can cause fuel injectors to explode from the high pressure. Damage caused by water in the fuel is not covered by manufacturer’s warranty.
Since this model has dual rear wheels, it has more unsprung weigh on the rear suspension, you need to be careful on sudden changes of direction on slippery roads. Fortunately, the Dodge designers have addressed this issue and the Ram 3500 offers Electronic Stability Control and an anti-spin rear axle. This truck is big, you may have difficulty manoeuvering in a Shopping Mall were turning space is limited. You will need to look for parking space a little further from the stores, especially when you are traveling with your boat.
When you are out on the open road towing the Ram 3500 truly shines. it is important to be able to stop in heavy stop-and-go traffic. This vehicle has 4-wheel disc anti-lock brakes and an integrated trailer towing package and a Diesel Exhaust Brake to give smooth braking effort. The Ram 3500 has Automatic Cruise Control, a five-speed AISIN heavy duty transmission with a 4.10 rear axle ratio and LT275-70R188E tires running on 18 inch polished aluminum rims.

When you are towing heavy loads, engine and transmissions can heat up quickly. The Ram has heavy-duty engine cooling with “Ram Active Air” for better circulation and heat control. When the winter winds start blowing, a winter front grill cover is available to keep the engine temperature within operating range.
The Ram 3500 also offers more innovative features like “Park-Sense front and rear Park Assist System. This is a boon when you are driving forward towards an object or are coming to close to another vehicle in the parking lot when you are backing up. Other features include Remote Keyless Entry and Sentry Key antitheft engine immobilizer; heated and ventilated seats leather-faced front bucket seats and a heated steering wheel. The rear seating features a 60/40 split folding bench seat with heated seats. Plus there are floor storage bins to keep things securely inside and not rolling around the cavernous back floor space area.
The Ram 3500 entertainment system included an 8.4-inch touchscreen, Sirius XM radio, nine Alpine speakers with subwoofer, built-in Navigation and hands-free communications with Bluetooth streaming.
The base price for this great tow vehicle was $65,995 and the price as tested was $88,185.

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